"Ride the Cyclone spotlights a teenage chamber choir from Uranium, Saskatchewan who died in a roller coaster accident at a traveling fair. Karnack, a mechanized fortune-telling machine, feels responsible for the young choir’s demise, and gives the teens a chance to express themselves to the world after death. Ride the Cyclone is their final recital, where they celebrate their individuality while coming to terms with their untimely demise."
Hmmmm... Maybe there was something more there? Well, tonight I was lucky enough to see the first Preview of the show at The Citadel Theatre and was blown away. This is no sad recollection. This was a riotous, irreverent, musically wow-filled show. I totally understand the description. I don't even want to say too much in this post, because I think it is better to just experience it, but it was outstanding. The music, performed excellently by the six member cast and band, demonstrates a wide variety of musical influences, from Rocky Horror Show, to Spring Awakening, to traditional Broadway belt, Rap, a touch of David Bowie, classical and even the recorder. I am missing more - but even with all these styles it is wonderfully cohesive. Each song has it's own surprises. You can tell they have been touring with this show for a little while because it is sharp and tight. Like a real roller-coaster it swings you from side to side and up and down and is full of twists and turns. Nothing is predictable and it's magic comes from it's low-tech simplicity with a hint of nostalgia. It is truly laugh out loud and yet it has these moments of real sadness and quiet emotion. It's also irreverent and saucy. I am happy to be going back to see it a second time. I was not alone in my appreciation. The audience gave it one of the fastest standing ovations I have ever seen. A truly magical Canadian musical!